Chicken Wild Rice Soup is a classic soup recipe, made easy in the crockpot. Unlike many cream-based soups, this slow cooker chicken soup recipe uses NO “cream of” soups, and its flavor is pure comfort.
What makes this one of the best crock pot recipes for homemade soup from scratch is that your slow cooker does all of the work!
If I were to put my definition of home into a recipe, today it would be creamy chicken and wild rice soup.
- Chicken and wild rice soup is cozy, easy, and familiar.
- It would love nothing more than to hang out with you on the couch all night and watch Netflix. (This Chicken Gnocchi Soup and Spanish Chicken Stew would also be happy to join you.)
- Since this is a chicken wild rice soup (no cream), I like to think that it’s on the healthier end of the spectrum, just like Chicken and Rice Casserole.
- The sauce makes the chicken and wild rice soup taste like there is heavy cream in the recipe (think Pioneer Woman / Paula Deen / Grandma’s chicken wild rice soup), BUT it’s made from flour and low-fat milk.
5 Star Review
“My whole family loves this soup! It is so satisfying and tasty, and of course healthy and easy!”— Elizabeth —
How to Make Chicken Wild Rice Soup
If you’ve ever ordered Panera chicken & wild rice soup, then you have an idea of what this soup will taste like.
As with so many recipes, however, homemade is truly superior.
For another copycat Panera soup recipe, chicken out this Crockpot Potato Soup and this Slow Cooker Broccoli and Cheese Soup.
Fortunately, thanks to the crock pot, this is an EASY creamy chicken and rice soup.
There’s a bit of sautéing on the stove to make a creamy mixture that you stir into the slow cooker, but it’s fast, simple, and completely worth the effort.
- Vegetables. Carrots, celery, potato, and onion are a delicious, cozy combination. The carrots add a mild sweetness, the celery adds a nice crunch, the potatoes help make the soup more filling, and the onions help build rich flavor.
- Poultry Seasoning. A one-stop mix of herbs and spices that perfectly complements the soup flavors.
- Wild Rice. Wild rice is nutty, complex, and wonderful. I love its bold, dark color too.
- Chicken Breasts. Lean, tender, and juicy. Chicken is rich in protein, helping make the soup more hearty. Feel free to swap chicken thighs if you prefer.
- Chicken Stock. The ideal base for this creamy chicken and wild rice soup. It has a deep, savory flavor.
- Butter + Flour + Milk. Creates a roux that thickens the soup and makes it ultra creamy, without the need for heavy cream or anything canned.
- Cook the vegetables. Stir in the spices. Transfer everything to a slow cooker.
- Rinse the rice, then add it to the slow cooker. Lay the chicken on top. Pour in 4 cups of the stock. Cook on LOW for 6 to 7 hours or on HIGH for 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours. Shred the chicken.
- Melt butter in a saucepan on the stovetop. Whisk in the flour. Slowly whisk in the milk. Let simmer until thickened. Stir the milk mixture into the slow cooker. ENJOY!
How to Make Instant Pot Chicken Wild Rice Soup
If you prefer, you can make this tasty recipe in an Instant Pot instead.
- Set the Instant Pot to Sauté and cook the carrots, celery, potato, and onion as directed in step 1.
- Continue with step 2, adding the ingredients as instructed to the Instant Pot. Cook on HIGH pressure (manual) for 35 minutes. (If using a whole grain rice blend, cook only for 20 minutes.)
- Manually release pressure.
- Make the roux and stir it in as directed in steps 3 and 4.
- To Store. Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage container for up to 5 days.
- To Reheat. Rewarm chicken and wild rice soup in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
- To Freeze. Freeze leftovers in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
Meal Prep Tip
Up to 1 day in advance, cook the vegetables with the seasonings as directed in Step 1. Refrigerate the vegetables in an airtight storage container until you’re ready to finish the recipe.
What to Serve with Chicken Wild Rice Soup
Recommended Tools to Make Chicken Wild Rice Soup
- Slow Cooker. Ideal for making this slow cooker chicken and wild rice soup.
- Hand Mixer. My go-to tool for easily shredding chicken for creamy chicken and wild rice soup.
- Saucepan. This high-quality saucepan is well-worth the investment.
Wherever you call home, I hope this simple but soulful recipe for crockpot chicken and wild rice soup will give you a warm and homey feeling too.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can make this recipe in a small slow cooker. If you are making this chicken soup in a smaller crock pot (less than 5 quarts), I recommend halving the recipe to ensure it will all fit.
Yes, you can make dairy free chicken and wild rice soup. Substitute the butter for vegan butter and the milk for unsweetened soy milk or almond milk. Note that the mixture may not be as creamy or may take longer to thicken.
To make this soup gluten free, omit the flour in step 3. With a fork, firmly whisk 1/4 cup of cornstarch into the milk before adding the milk to the melted butter. Stir to combine and let simmer, stirring often, until thickened.
Chicken Wild Rice Soup
- 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 medium carrots peeled and 1/4-inch diced (about 2 cups)
- 3 medium celery stalks 1/4-inch diced (about 1 cup)
- 1 small russet potato peeled and 1/4-inch diced (about 1 cup)
- 1/2 medium yellow onion diced (about 1/2 cup)
- 2 teaspoons poultry seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus additional to taste
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper plus additional to taste
- 1 cup uncooked wild rice or whole grain wild rice blend
- 1 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts (about 3 medium breasts), trimmed of excess fat
- 5 to 6 cups low-sodium chicken stock divided
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 3/4 cup 2% milk plus additional as needed
- Lightly coat a 5-quart or larger slow cooker with nonstick spray. Heat the olive oil in a large, nonstick pan over medium high. Add the carrots, celery, potato, and onion, and cook until the vegetables are beginning to soften, about 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in the poultry seasoning, salt, and pepper and cook 30 additional seconds. Remove from the heat and transfer to the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Rinse the wild rice, then add to the slow cooker with the vegetables. Arrange the chicken breasts on top, then pour in 4 cups of the chicken stock. Cover and cook on low for 6 to 7 hours or high for 2 1/2 to 3 1/2 hours, until the rice is tender and the chicken is cooked through. Remove the chicken to a plate or cutting board and let cool slightly. With two forks or your fingers, shred the chicken, then return to the slow cooker. Place on low to keep warm. If the chicken finishes cooking before the rice, remove it first so that it does not overcook, then re-cover the slow cooker and continue cooking until the rice is tender.
- Once the chicken and rice are cooked, melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Once the butter is completely melted, sprinkle the flour over the top. Whisk and cook until the flour is golden brown, about 1 minute. Pour in the 2 3/4 cups milk a few splashes at a time, whisking as you go to remove any lumps. Bring to a gentle boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer. Let cook, stirring often, until the mixture thickens, about 4 minutes.
- Pour the milk mixture into the slow cooker and stir to combine. If you’d like a thinner soup, stir in additional chicken stock until your desired consistency is reached. Taste add additional salt and/or pepper to taste. Serve hot.
- TO STORE: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight storage container for up to 5 days.
- TO REHEAT: Rewarm soup in a Dutch oven on the stovetop over medium-low heat or in the microwave.
- TO FREEZE: Freeze leftovers in an airtight freezer-safe storage container for up to 3 months. Let thaw overnight in the refrigerator before reheating.
- TO MAKE DAIRY FREE: Substitute the butter for vegan butter and the milk for unsweetened soy milk or almond milk. Note that the mixture may not be as creamy or may take longer to thicken.
- TO MAKE GLUTEN FREE: Omit the flour in step 3. With a fork, firmly whisk 1/4 cup of cornstarch into the milk before adding the milk to the melted butter. Stir to combine and let simmer, stirring often, until thickened.
- TO MAKE IN AN INSTANT POT: If you prefer, you can make this tasty recipe in an Instant Pot instead: Set the Instant Pot to Sauté and cook the carrots, celery, potato, and onion as directed in step 1. Continue with step 2, adding the ingredients as instructed to the Instant Pot. Cook on HIGH pressure (manual) for 35 minutes. (If using a whole grain rice blend, cook only for 20 minutes.) Manually release pressure. Make the roux and stir it in as directed in steps 3 and 4.
Join today and start saving your favorite recipes
Create an account to easily save your favorite recipes and access FREE meal plans.Sign Me Up
I love ALL your recipes Erin! Thank you so much for sharing your skills and talents! I knew there was something about you I liked (well more than your recipes). I too, am from Wichita! Fantastic place to grow up! Thanks again!
Thank you SO MUCH, Julie! I truly appreciate it! :)
I fell in love with Panera’s cream of chicken and wild rice a decade ago and have yet to find a good copy cat recipe. I’m confident this will be a winner! Can’t wait to try!!
I hope you love it, Emily!
There’s no such thing as too many slow cooker recipes!! This one looks amazing!
OMG! This chicken soup looks super delicious! I would devour them once!.
I made this in my instant pot with your recommendations. I left the veggies rough cut – not diced. I was afraid the veggies would disappear. I also used frozen chicken breasts to avoid over cooking the chicken. Manual pressure for 35 minutes. Perfect! Just needed fresh biscuits ?.
Thanks so much for reporting back on the Instant Pot version, Ginny! That will be so helpful for other readers who want to try it too. I’m happy to hear you enjoyed the soup!
Hi! Have you ever tried this with quinoa? So excited to use this!!
Hi Ericka, I’ve never tried this with quinoa, so it’d be an experiment. The flavor would be very different and may be more bland since wild rice is more flavorful than quinoa. You may also need to adjust the liquid ratio and cooking time since quinoa uses a different liquid amount and is done faster than wild rice. If you do decide to give it a try, I’d love to know how it goes.
I made this soup last night and it was delicious! I did add a little more salt and pepper than the recipe called for. My husband and daughter had second servings. Next time I may add Cajun seasoning to add a little spice to it! Thank you for sharing your amazing recipes!!
Sheri, I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed the soup! Thanks so much for giving it a try and taking the time to leave this wonderful review!
I doubled the veggies but kept everything else the same. Its delightful. I plan on making it for company, its perfect. Thanks for the great recipes!
Thanks so much for taking the time to leave this awesome review, Roxann! I’m happy to hear you enjoyed the soup!
hey girl- this looks so yummy!
Thank you so much, Shawnna!
This looks INCREDIBLE…like soul-warming kinda good. I’m too excited to make this! Thanks for the recipe! :)
I also did it in the Insta Pot, but followed the directions as is. I did have whole grain rice blend and the 20 minutes manual was perfect! It all turned out great and was very easy and quick!
Victoria, thanks for chiming in! I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed the soup!
hello, tried this today but must be doing something wrong with the milk sauce. i melted the 2 tbls butter which just covers the bottom of the pan and added the 1/3 cup of flour and it basically turned into a milkion balls of cookie dough. i whisked in the milk but no matter how hard i try it is a clumpy floury mixture :(
Hi Jason, next time, try to really add the milk slowly (just a few splashes at a time), stopping between each to whisk out the lumps—just keep at it. I hope that helps!
This soup is amazing! I made it last week and am making more this week.
Jen, I’m so glad to hear you enjoyed the soup! Thank you so much for giving it a try and taking the time to leave this wonderful review!
Hi. I’m not really a fan of this recipe. I would have been ok without the roux. The roux was nice and creamy and I added only half of it. I was afraid it was too much. The soup was pasty. It would have been great without the roux. Adding more stock did not help. What did I do wrong? This was more like chicken pot pie filling not soup. The flavor was good. I may put biscuit dough on top and bake until done . Maybe the rice over cooked?
Hi Judy, if the soup tasted pasty, it sounds like the butter/flour mixture at the start of the roux was not cooked long enough to get rid of the flour taste. I hope that helps if you do decide to give the recipe another try!
Loved it! I used my new Instant Pot and followed your directions as written. I’ve tried three Wild Rice Soup recipes so far this fall/winter and yours is the best. I’m from Minnesota but this is our third year living in Arizona and we really miss our Wild Rice soup. It’s hard to find long grain or mixed grain rice here. Only some of the specialty stores carry it. Until recently we didn’t have a Panera nearby either. I will definitely be looking through your recipes to see what I want to try next!
Jody HOORAY! I am so happy that you found this recipe, and I am flattered that it’s been your favorite. Thank you so much for trying it and letting me know how it came out for you. I hope you enjoy the other recipes you try as well!
So so good and easy! Made perfectly in Instant Pot
YAY! Thanks Elaine (and thank you THANK YOU for leaving the review too!)
I am in the process of cooking my soup. I am going to leave out the roux as I am not a fan of thick soups. It may be thinner but I think it will be just as delicious.
I hope you love it this way Jean!
What kind of wild rice should be used?
Hi Amy, I used plain wild rice, but you can also use a wild rice blend if you’re unable to find a package of 100% wild rice in your area.
Made this in my pressure cooker! So great! Had one chicken breast, whole grain rice blend and cut vegetables as recipe called, and did 25min and let it slow pressure release, the chicken was a tad tiny bit dry on the outside but everything else was great and you really didn’t notice the chicken once I shredded in the soup.
Thank you fo the healthas delicious easy recipe!
Jessica, SO FUNNY because this is what I ate last night for dinner! My sister made it for me the same way :) I am so glad to hear you loved it!
This recipe looks sooo good! Can’t wait to try it once the weather finally cools off.
Where did you get the bowls presented in the pictures? Thanks so much!
Hi Allison, I got the bowls at World Market. I hope you enjoy the soup!
This is amazing! Not only does it taste great but one serving only 280 calories? I had to modify since I couldn’t find just wild rice at my usual grocery. This recipe will be a staple in my home. Thanks, Erin!
Kelly, I’m so happy to hear you enjoyed the soup! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave this wonderful review!
Oh my! I could marry this soup. Deeeelish. However I might butterfly the chicken as the rice was overdone…. However still the best soup ever…. thanks :)
I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Esther! Thanks for taking the time to leave this review!
Hello! Can you use Rotisserie chicken instead? Sometimes, I feel like the chicken comes out dry when you cook it for a long time.
Hi Shristi, I didn’t experience the chicken coming out dry, you could try using rotisserie if that’s a concern for you. I hope you enjoy the recipe!
Great recipe! I made in instant pot with 3 frozen chicken breasts and chicken was moist and tender. I followed recipe except only used half of the roux as I felt it was thick enough. Will definitely make this again. I made fresh garlic bread sticks to go with the soup.
Thanks for reporting back, Judy! I’m glad to hear you enjoyed the soup!
So I’ve made this about 6 times now in my Instant Pot so I wanted to report back what I’ve found! I follow Erin’s directions for the Instant Pot and do high pressure for 35 minutes once my chicken and rice are in. ONE thing I change is that I only use 3 cups of chicken broth, since the instant pot loses no liquid in the process. That being said, I do like my soups “souper” (haha) thick, so keep that in mind. Wild rice is really not hard to find in the store, my neighborhood market Walmart carries it and they pretty much carry nothing speciality. Happy cooking!
Hooray! I’m glad you love the soup, Elaine. Thanks for reporting back! :)
I made this last night and I loved the flavor. I improvised on the spices since I didn’t have poultry spice. I did need to add quite a bit more stock. I just wish I had checked it before 6 hours since I think my chicken was overdone and wild rice exploded a little. But I will make it again. I would also make veggies bigger, add others, and leave out potatoes.
Bernadette, thanks for taking the time to review the recipe! It sounds like you know exactly what else to tweak next time!
This is great, and very easy.
My only criticism is the flour to butter ratio, which, as seems to be the case with others, didn’t work for me. Instead, 1/2 C butter to 1/2 C flour made a lovely base to which I added the warm milk.
Also, it is a very thick soup using only the 4 C stock, really more of a casserole than soup, so having 2 to 3 C of stock available to think the soup is a good idea.
Thanks for sharing your notes! I’m so glad you enjoyed it!
Perfect soup for a cold day in the Midwest!
So I attempted this recipe in an instant pot it tasted delicious but over cooked the rice and potatoes I cooked mine 30 mins should have only cooked it 20
Hi Morgan! I’m happy to hear that you enjoyed the flavors in this dish! Thank you for taking the time to try this recipe!
No my favorite sadly :( My chicken also came out chewy (I checked it and took it out early). the flour mixture also came out clumpy. I made it a second time putting the milk in verrryy slowly and still the same result.
Hi Kiki, I’m sorry to hear that you had trouble with this soup. Did you whisk the flour mixture well after pouring in the milk? Either way, I know it’s frustrating to try a recipe and not have it turn out, so I really wish you would’ve enjoyed it!
So it says 5-6 cups of stock, but you only say 4 cups in the directions….haven’t made it yet but I will use more.
Michele, if you keep reading the recipe, you’ll see that the remaining stock is added at the end, according to how thick you like the soup; you can add as much or as little as you like. I hope you enjoy it!
Very delicious, I recommend to any body to make it , plus I make the healthy turkey chili o my good is delicious , my family loved
I’m so happy that it was a hit, Sandra! Thank you for sharing this kind review!
I found your site a few weeks ago, and have made several of your recipes- they’re all sooooo good!! My husband is kind of picky, but he LOVED THIS SOUP, and so did I. He also couldn’t stop raving about your Chicken Tikka Masala!!! So this week I’ll be trying the Butter Chicken. My father was from Mumbai, India, and we took him back there to see his family before he died. All my kids, and my husband, love Indian food, so I’m so glad to have a few recipes that are easy AND healthy!!! Thank you for all you do!!! You’re amazingly gifted!!
This comment MADE my day, Shera! Thank you for trying my recipes and sharing this kind review!
This was great!!! I used a combo of wild rice and brown rice, I seasoned and seared the chicken before throwing it in the pot and added mushies w the cream at the end. What a great soup and a great recipe. Very easy to follow!!
Note to those who skim read like me. I used all the stock up front. Should have used less for a creamier soup.
This was delish!!!
I’m so happy that you enjoyed the recipe, Gina! Thank you for sharing this kind review!
My whole family loves this soup! It is so satisfying and tasty, and of course healthy and easy! Thanks Erin! Your recipes never fail!
I’m so happy that you’ve enjoyed it, Elizabeth! Thank you for sharing this kind review!
I am planning to cook my rice separately and add it at the end to avoid overcooking it, which has happened when I have cooked rice in the crock pot in the past. Should I adjust the chicken broth that is added to the chicken and veggies at the beginning if I do this?
Mandy, yes I’d suggest adding less broth. You can always add more at the end to thin it out if needed. I hope you enjoy it!
Can I use the same recipe to make it on the stovetop? (I want it to be done more quickly than inthe slow cooker.) Thanks!
Hi Lynne! I’ve only tested this recipe in the slow cooker but it should work on the stovetop with some adjustments. If you decide to experiment, let me know how it goes!
Can I sub almond milk for regular milk??
Hi Jenna! Yes you can substitute the milk with almond milk. You’ll see more of my substitution suggestions in the recipe notes at the end of the recipe card. Hope you enjoy it!
This soup was a great dinner tonight, to warm us up on a cold Canadian winter night. Thank you for the great recipe!! Soo good!
Hi Sheri! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thank you for this kind review!
I made this as a stovetop soup tonight and we all LOVED it. DELICIOUS!
So glad, yay!
Hi Marie! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! Thank you for this kind review!
What would the herbs be instead of the premixed poultry seasoning? Parsley sage rosemary and thyme?? And how much of each one please, and thank you!
Hi Marcia! I’m sorry, I have only tested the recipe as is and have only used the poultry seasoning. Looking it up online poultry seasoning consist of about 6-8 different herbs. I’d look up how to make a homemade one first and then use it in this recipe. You’ll like have most of the ingredients on hand! If you decide to experiment, let me know how it goes!
I’ve tried quite a few of your recipes now and they are so delicious. Trying this soup next week but I’m on a low sugar impact plan. To make it compatible with my diet can I substitute almond flour for the regular? And what veggie would you recommend in place of the potato? Perhaps sauteed mushrooms?
Hi Diane! I’ve only tested the recipe as is, but you could probably just leave it out. Hope you enjoy it!
Hi there Erin,
I’ve made this soup and it is deeeeeeeelish. I’m preparing for a friend and I’m wondering if it would be best to freeze before adding the dairy. That’s where I’m leaning but I appreciate your advice. thx.
Hi Ms. Becky! I think it could go either way. Glad you enjoyed the soup!